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Car stability and handling: criteria and factors

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Car stability and handling: criteria and factors
Car stability and handling: criteria and factors

Car handling is a factor that worries many drivers. Not only the speed of movement, but also the safety of passengers depends on it. There are several levels of control - basic and "advanced". In this article, you can find information on how to improve car handling and whether it is necessary to do it for ordinary city trips.

What is this?

What affects car handling

What is car handling? This is a property that is characterized by the ability of the car to quickly and clearly respond to a change in course and orientation in space. Ideally, the car's handling should not depend on speed or on external factors (for example, wind). But in practice, as the speed increases, the vehicle's handling becomes worse, and often even one wrong move can lead to tragic consequences.

Poor vehicle handling affects not onlymaneuvers, but also on the safety of passengers. Therefore, many drivers strive to improve it.

To tuning often resorted to the owners of sports cars. If the suspension in such a sports car is set too soft, then road handling deteriorates, and motorists have two options: sell it or remake it. Often, connoisseurs stop at the second option and try to make their dream car from a conveyor copy. It should be noted that for normal driving around the city or for short distances, most modern cars have sufficient handling characteristics. There is no need to improve them, as it is quite expensive and does not always make sense. But if you still decide to send your car for tuning, then you should definitely find out what factors affect handling.

Systems that improve directional stability and vehicle handling

Factors that influence

The stability of a machine depends on many factors. But the main criterion for car handling is the following:

  • steering wheel stabilization;
  • camber and toe angle;
  • car body;
  • type and condition of suspension;
  • tires;
  • presence of wheel blocking during braking;
  • steering status.

Each of these details can both worsen and improve the condition of the car. In order to get a perfectly controlled car, you need to do a lot of work on installing and replacing some elements.

Controllability criteria

Drivability criteria is an important evaluation factor that all manufacturers must meet when producing machines. The main criteria are listed in GOST and are used when testing new models. But for ordinary motorists, complex calculations are not needed. It is possible to understand that the car is poorly driven even during the daily commute.

How to improve car handling
  • Sustainability. Russian roads are far from ideal, and there are often large and small potholes along the way. If you accidentally hit a wheel in one of these holes, your car should not deviate much from the course. Otherwise, it is highly likely to fly to the adjacent lane, since at high speed the degree of deviation will be greater.
  • Entering a turn should be clear and predictable. The entry angle should not differ greatly due to external factors or the coating material. On vehicles with good suspension, an accurate trajectory during the passage of bends and turns is possible even at high speed.
  • Grip. The car in any conditions must quickly and clearly respond to the movement of the steering wheel. Difficulties also should not cause sudden acceleration or braking. Ideally, the machine should maintain such characteristics both on dry and wet surfaces, as well as during winter.

Drivability of a car depends on many factors. It is quite difficult to calculate it, after all, one equation will not do here. Therefore, most drivers prefer to be guided by their own experience. chiefthe criterion for handling is sufficient steering in difficult conditions (high speed, snow or rain).

When is it worth upgrading a car?

Improving the handling of the car is not necessary in all cases. As a rule, most modern vehicles have average values ​​\u200b\u200bthat help you drive calmly in the speed intervals recommended by the manufacturer. Who still needs to think about the stability and handling of the car?

  • To owners of sports cars. Those who buy cars specifically for fast and aggressive driving, as a rule, want to finish and improve something in the car, since there is no limit to perfection. However, you need to understand that improving manageability is either expensive or very expensive, so it is better to plan the entire budget in advance.
  • Users of used cars. Over time, the condition of some parts deteriorates in them, and they need to be adjusted for normal handling.
How to improve car handling

Even if you decide to tune the car without objective reasons, most likely, this will increase its technical characteristics. After all, such cars resist side drift better, can maintain high speed even in corners, and thanks to good tires and proper balancing, their braking and acceleration properties are also improved.


How to improve car handling? The first thing you should pay attention to is the tires. They provide traction. Replacementtires are a quick and inexpensive way to improve handling. When improving performance, it is important to keep in mind that, first of all, the tires must be fairly new. Rubber with a worn tread on slippery surfaces and at high speed does not leave even the most sports car a chance to boast of its handling. The contact patch must be maximized. To do this, you can choose wider tires with a low sidewall height. This will help improve the behavior of the car on the road. In addition, such simple rules as observance of seasonality, normal pressure inside the chamber and the use of the same wheels on different axles must be observed.

In addition to tires, the car's handling is affected by the size of the rims. The larger the width and diameter of the wheel, the more stable the car will become. But at the same time, it should be borne in mind that increasing the size of the wheels can adversely affect the chassis, so it would be best to consult with a specialist before replacing.

Vehicle stability and control


The main role in the handling of the car is played by the suspension. On conventional cars, it is designed so that the handling and softness parameters are approximately equal to each other. Since these are directly proportional characteristics, the development of one of them will cause the deterioration of the other. For example, if you want to make the car more manageable, then you will have to make the ride stiffer and less comfortable. What should be changed in the suspension to make the car better behave on the road?

  1. Springs are divided into soft and hard. The former provide a softer ride, while the latter are able to quickly respond to changing conditions. For tuning the suspension, stiff springs are chosen, which can be distinguished by blue or green.
  2. If you have already decided to replace the springs, then you should not ignore the shock absorbers. The gas shock absorber, which is able to provide timely compression and rebound, has the best effect on handling. As a result, the wheels make better contact with the road and the contact patch increases.
  3. The strut supports do not always change, but only if the shock absorber is attached to them with hinges. Quality mounts absorb vibrations well and have a positive effect on the responsiveness of control systems.
  4. Silent blocks in the suspension allow you to soften the blows while driving. If you replace the standard silent blocks with polyurethane ones, the stiffness of the suspension and, as a result, the car's handling will increase.


What affects the handling of the car in addition to the above details? Of course, this is the chassis. It is important for the vehicle to perform ideally on the road that all four wheels maintain the same grip during the turn. This is called a neutral balance. Most of the cars that are produced in production, have insufficient contact with the road during the turn. The main grip is usually on the front wheels, while the rear wheels just “slip” at this time. What can be done to remedy the situation? If you own a front wheel drivecar, then you need to put a stiffer anti-roll bar on the rear axle. This will normalize the balance between the front and rear axle and improve traction.

Best handling cars

Wheel angle

Sometimes even the details and factors put together do not give the desired result. How to improve car handling if none of the above methods helped? Perhaps, in this case, the castor will have an impact. Castor is the angle of inclination of the axis of rotation of the wheels of the car. The front pillars of the car are never set strictly vertically, but always at an angle to or away from the driver. This allows the vehicle to keep the direction of travel straight, even if the force has been released. Most of all, this effect is noticeable during the exit of the turn, when the steering wheel itself returns to its place. By itself, the influence of castor on the handling of the car is small. But the increased angle allows you to adjust the camber angle in a wider range, and this already directly affects the area of ​​\u200b\u200bcontact of the wheel with the surface.

When working with wheels, it is also worth considering the camber and toe angle. With a strictly vertical axis, the machine becomes less manageable. If you want to improve the responsiveness of the car, then a negative camber angle should be used. With it, the car, entering the turn, will maintain contact with the road. The toe angle is calculated based on the direction of travel. A positive angle has the best effect on handling, for this it is done at 10-15degrees in the positive direction. Unfortunately, this wheel setup contributes to faster tire wear, which wears unevenly on one side.

Vehicle stability and control

Stability Program

Each year, electronic systems in cars are becoming more advanced. They help to eliminate driver errors, level out environmental conditions and correct the behavior of the car on the road. Most of them are available in premium cars, but some are increasingly appearing in the economy segment. One of these systems is the system of exchange rate stability. It is a high-level active system that uses many components to operate. Its task usually comes down to monitoring the safety of the driver and passengers. The system "monitors" the stability of the machine and prevents loss of traction by making corrections. For example, it will prevent you from entering a corner on the wrong trajectory at high speed.

Systems that improve vehicle directional stability and handling are built on the basis of ABS and use various sensors in their work:

  • steer;
  • electro-hydraulic module;
  • speed sensor;
  • transverse and longitudinal acceleration sensor.

The main goal of the dynamic stability system is to maintain the selected trajectory of movement during the turn. Due to the changes available to the program, it eliminates oversteer or understeer. ESP also turns on when it hits a slippery section of the road. Cleverthe system alternately activates the brake circuits to help stop the slip and return control to the driver.

Best handling cars

If you don't want to invest insane amounts of money into tuning an already bought car, then the ideal choice for you would be to buy a new car with good handling. Such models are produced, and there are not so few of them.

How to improve car handling
  • Ford Mondeo is not in vain so popular all over the world. Its versatility is combined with excellent performance.
  • BMW 3 Series stands out from other models with optimal balance and weight distribution. Thanks to the efforts of engineers, you will not only not feel the bumps on the road, but also get full control over the movement of the car. Even in difficult conditions (in winter or in the rain) "BMW" does not reduce its performance.
  • Ford Focus is very popular among families with children, so the company has taken special care of the safety and handling of the car. Customer reviews prove that the car performs well on the road at all speeds.
  • Subaru Impreza is a budget and economical option for a semi-sports car. In it you can find thoughtful steering, as well as all-wheel drive. The result is excellent road contact and confident cornering.
  • Kia Sportage is a crossover that has a fairly good suspension and stiff shock absorbers. At the same time, this fact does not affect the comfort of the driver and passengers. Maneuverability and responsivenesscontrols have made the Sportage a true bestseller.

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